Update: ‘Price & Release Date’ and ‘Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Sales’ sections updated.
Sales data show that the fifth-generation Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is among the best hybrid SUV models on sale in the United States. Toyota promptly releases new versions to keep the vehicle attractive to buyers for sustained periods. This time around, there’s a new adventure-focused variant that gets added to the MY2023 RAV4 range. The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid gets a new Woodland Edition that bolsters its all-road/rough-road credentials, while the rest of the variants get more equipment in the cabin.
Here are all the things you should know about the latest update:
The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid remains identical to the previous model year in terms of design. However, the Woodland Edition adds some bling to the exterior. The most visually distinctive upgrades on the special edition are the Falken Wildpeak All-terrain tires wrapped around Flow-Formed Bronze Colored wheels and chunky roof rails with cross bars.
It also gets black badging all around—the badges are hard to spot on the Midnight Black Metallic paint option, and customers might want to choose the contrasting Cavalry Blue or Ice Cap colors. These are the only three paint options for the 2023 RAV4 Hybrid Woodland Edition. The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid has 13 paint options, including four dual-tone color schemes:
- Magnetic Gray Metallic
- Lunar Rock
- Wind Chill Pearl
- Ice Cap
- Cavalry Blue
- Midnight Black Metallic
- Ruby Flare Pearl
- Silver Sky Metallic
- Cavalry Blue/Midnight Black Metallic roof
- Wind Chill Pearl/Midnight Black Metallic roof
- Magnetic Gray Metallic/Midnight Black Metallic roof
- Silver Sky Metallic/Midnight Black Metallic roof
The Woodland Edition also gets black mudguards and dual gloss black exhaust tips. That said, the 2023 RAV4 Hybrid continues to sport a muscular stance. It gets wraparound LED headlamps upfront and an upright bonnet. The squared-off wheel arches lend it a rugged look, while the 17- and 18- inch alloy options appear stylish. The new Woodland Edition with the additions mentioned above makes the RAV4 Hybrid appear adventure-ready.
New infotainment system
The interior layout remains identical to the outgoing version, but there’s more equipment on offer. The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid gets the Toyota Audio Multimedia system. Developed by the Texas-based Connected Technology team, the Toyota Audio Multimedia system has over-the-air (OTA) updates capability. Intelligent Assistant, Cloud Navigation, Destination Assist, and Google Points-Of-Interest (POI) data are optional.
An 8.0-inch version of the new infotainment system has replaced the 7.0 touchscreen infotainment system of the previous model and a 10.5-inch version has replaced the 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system of the previous model. The 8-inch unit is standard on the Hybrid LE, XLE, XLE Premium, SE, and Woodland Edition variants, while the Hybrid XSE and Limited trims get a larger 10.5-inch unit.
The vehicle continues to feature Bluetooth, wireless Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay, optional Wi-Fi Connect with 4G, and connection for up to 5 devices—practically turning the Toyota RAV4 into an AT&T hotspot. Wi-Fi Connect also enables access to Apple Music and Amazon Music subscriptions.
A 12.3-inch fully digital instrument cluster is now standard on the range-topping Hybrid Limited variant. XLE Premium and XSE customers who don’t prefer the semi-digital cluster (analog dials and a multi-information display) can upgrade to the 12.3-inch unit, while a 7-inch unit is now standard on the lower variants.
The Woodland Edition also gets a 120V inverter to power a range of household appliances and devices if the need arises during camping or road trips. The special edition also gets all-weather floor and cargo mats.
The 2023 Toyota RAV4 hybrid gets Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 (TSS 2.5) as standard. The previous version was equipped with TSS 2.0. A new feature includes the ability to detect oncoming vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists at intersections. The Pre-Collision System provides audio-visual alerts and can even autonomously apply brakes in emergencies. The Emergency Steering Assist can also stabilize drivers’ evasive maneuvers to prevent lane departure.
TSS 2.5 also includes the Full-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC). The feature maintains a safe distance from the vehicle in the front at any speed and can take over braking and acceleration depending on the pace of the cars ahead. DRCC works with Lane Trace Assist and Lane Departure Alert that help the vehicle stay centered in its lane by providing slight steering assistance. More active safety systems include Blind Spot Monitor, Road Sign Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, and Parking Assist.
2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Specifications
The SUV remains unchanged in powertrain specs. Underpinning the RAV4 is the Toyota New Global Architecture-K (TNGA-K) platform. Under the hood is the Toyota Hybrid System II (THS II) that works with the 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder, Atkinson Cycle gas engine. Two electric motors, a front- and a rear-axle-mounted motor, draw energy from a 1.6 kWh lithium-ion battery. Those worried about battery life would appreciate that it gets ten year/150,000 miles warranty.
The front electric motor produces 118 hp while the rear contributes 55 hp. Front/rear torque output is 149/80 lb-ft. The Peak system output is 219 hp. The power and torque go to the front wheels through a continuously variable transmission (CVT). Torque to the rear wheels gets channeled independently as there’s no additional driveshaft at the rear. The electronic all-wheel-drive can help drivers power out of low-grip situations.
Toyota makes some of the world’s best hybrid systems, and the efficiency is likewise. The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid provides an EPA-est. combined fuel economy of 40 mpg (LE/XLE/XLE Premium/SE/XSE/Limited)/37 mpg (Woodland Edition). The results are most noticeable in low-speed driving conditions where the RAV4 Hybrid can run on pure electric energy for short durations. There’s constant brake energy recuperation in stop-and-go traffic thanks to frequent braking—the battery regains energy to power the motors.
Customers can toggle between five drive modes: Sport, Normal, Eco, EV, and Trail Mode. The drive modes can be altered using a rotary dial on the center console.
|Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Specifications||Value|
|Engine||2.5 liter, 4 cyl|
|E-motors||Front and rear|
|Combined Power||219 hp|
|E-motor power (front/rear)||118 hp / 54 hp|
|E-motor torque (front/rear)||149 lb-ft / 89 lb-ft|
|Battery||1.6 kWh li-ion|
|EPA-est. Fuel Economy||City: 41 mpg (LE/XLE/XLE Premium/SE/XSE/Limited)/38 mpg (Woodland Edition)|
Highway: 38 mpg (LE/XLE/XLE Premium/SE/XSE/Limited)/35 mpg (Woodland Edition)
Combined: 40 mpg (LE/XLE/XLE Premium/SE/XSE/Limited)/37 mpg (Woodland Edition)
The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Woodland Edition gets a sophisticated suspension tuned by Toyota Racing Development (TRD), the brand’s performance division with close ties to its motorsport programs. The Japanese carmaker states that the suspension has been engineered to improve body control and isolate the cabin from road undulations. It’s more off-road focused and gets bump stops to maximize wheel travel during compression. It gets twin-tube dampers with internal rebound springs and unique valves to keep the SUV stable over rough surfaces.
Price & Release Date
Toyota silently rolled out a price hike of USD 500 for the 2023 RAV4 Hybrid around the start of the year. The hybrid SUV’s retail price ranges from USD 30,725 to USD 39,030. Toyota levies a USD 1,335 DPH fee extra.
|Trim||2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Price|
|Woodland Edition||USD 33,525|
|XLE Premium||USD 35,125|
The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid has started reaching U.S. dealerships. Ventura Toyota (Ventura, CA), Toyota of Pullman (Pullman, WA), Freeway Toyota (Hanford, CA), and several other dealerships have listed their inventory online.
Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Sales
The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is the best-selling Toyota hybrid car in the United States. In 2022, the brand sold 149,938 units of the electrified SUV in America, 23.9% higher than in 2021 (120,983 units) and the highest in the model’s history. The RAV4 Hybrid’s main rivals include the Ford Escape Hybrid, Hyundai Tucson Hybrid, and the Honda CR-V Hybrid.
The large-scale adoption of hybrids in the U.S. isn’t a realistic vision, considering that several electric cars with long-range batteries will soon come available at the same price point. The non-hybrid RAV4’s quarterly sales are comparable to the RAV4 hybrid’s yearly sales, indicating that the masses prefer the gas-only version due to multiple reasons like comparatively high purchase prices and maintenance costs.
That said, the 2023 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is one of the best compact SUVs available in the U.S. today. With low fuel consumption, a wide trim selection, and affordable prices, the country’s best-selling hybrid SUV offers something for almost every customer looking for a new frugal daily driver. The recently launched Toyota bZ4X isn’t easily available, affordable, or practical for most customers, and for them, the RAV4 Hybrid is an ideal match!
Featured Image Source: Toyota